Beds, Herts & Bucks

Faruk Ali case: Bedfordshire Police officers sacked for gross misconduct

Christopher Thomas and Christopher Pitts Image copyright SOUTH BEDS NEWS AGENCY
Image caption Bedfordshire Police officers Christopher Thomas and Christopher Pitts breached professional conduct standards, a hearing found

Two police officers have been sacked after they were found guilty of gross misconduct over the way they dealt with a man who has autism.

Bedfordshire PCs Christopher Thomas and Christopher Pitts chased and detained Faruk Ali, 33, in Luton in 2014.

The officers were cleared of misconduct in public office following a trial.

But Leicestershire Police found they had a case to answer, and the pair were found to have breached standards of professional conduct.

Mr Thomas was found to have breached four standards following a week-long hearing and Mr Pitts was found to have breached three, both amounting to gross misconduct.

The standards breached by both men were around honesty and integrity; authority, respect and courtesy and discreditable conduct.

Mr Thomas was also found to have breached equality and diversity standards in relation to Mr Ali's disability.

Image copyright South Beds News Agency
Image caption Faruk Ali, 33, was chased in a police car in Luton in February 2014

The Leicestershire force carried out the investigation into the case for the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).

Mr Thomas, 33, of Welwyn Garden City, and Mr Pitts, 39, of Bedford, were accused of laughing as they drove after Mr Ali, who was walking in the street near his home in Luton.

Following the misconduct hearing, Bedfordshire Police's Deputy Chief Constable apologised to Mr Ali on behalf of the force.

"The two officers' conduct has fallen well below any standard that is acceptable in policing and they have now paid the ultimate sanction in losing their jobs," he said.

"This should send a very clear message to police officers that this type of behaviour is not acceptable and will not be tolerated."

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